Pre-Conference Workshop

Sunday April 28

9:00 AM – 12:00 PM 

Data Analytics Hackathon: Transforming Higher Education

A "hackathon" is an event that brings together groups of people to develop creative approaches for solving problems. Participants will engage in a hands-on experience to explore workforce and student success challenges.

A recent brief from NACUBO, “Higher Education’s Top 5 Business Issues of 2023,” explores the top business challenges confronting colleges and universities. In this hackathon, we will be diving into the top two issues:

1. Supporting and Maintaining the Workforce
2. Ensuring Successful Student Outcomes

Attendees will be assigned to a hackathon team. Half of the teams will focus on workforce challenges, and the other half will explore student success challenges. The teams will review a business challenge, develop and refine questions for a data analysis, analyze a sample dataset, and develop and present a solution.

This experience will help participants build their knowledge of higher education data, understand how to involve key stakeholders, develop skills to ask and refine data questions, leverage data tools, and collaboratively develop an action plan. To fully benefit from this session, participants should plan to bring a personal laptop. Lunch will be provided as part of the experience.

Learning Objectives: 

  • Identify current pressing issues in higher education and explore using a hackathon to generate creative solutions.
  • Explain how to involve key stakeholders.
  • Ask and refine data questions, leverage data tools, and collaboratively develop an action plan.

Jean M. Vock served as senior vice president for Business Affairs and chief financial officer (CFO) for UNLV. There Jean directed the division that provides the business, financial, operational, planning, and physical infrastructure that undergird UNLV’s academic, research, and service mission. Jean now acts as a consultant, coach and mentor in the higher-ed and non-profit communities.

Jean has more than 30 years of leadership experience in higher education. She previously held both central administrative and college administration positions at University of Arizona, including chief financial officer for two academic colleges and assistant comptroller. Prior to her time in higher education, she worked for the State of Arizona and the defense industry in the financial, compliance, internal, and corporate auditing departments.


Nicole Salazar, University of Arizona

Ruth Johnston, University of Washington, University of Washington, retired: Beginning January 2024, Ruth began serving as Acting Vice President, NACUBO Consulting, in addition to her other consulting work through RAJ Consulting. Prior to that Ruth served as the System Vice Chancellor and Chief Operating Office at New Mexico State University. Over her nearly four-year tenure, Ruth oversaw areas including Finance & Business Services, Facilities, ERM & Safety, Human Resources, Information & Communication Technologies, Government & Community Relations, and Marketing & Communications. Prior to this, Ruth held the role of Vice Chancellor at the University of Washington (UW) Bothell where she oversaw finance, facilities, IT, HR and more. She held the position of Associate Vice President/Provost for many years at UW (Seattle). Her leadership included Financial Management, Planning & Administration, School of Nursing, Organizational Excellence, UW Extension, Training & Development, and Housing & Food Services Ruth holds a doctorate in organizational development/higher education, a master's degree in human relations, and a bachelor's in counseling psychology/social sciences. Ruth served as President and Board Member of the Western Association of College & University Business Officers (WACUBO), and has served on boards of NACUBO, Network for Change and Continuous Innovation (NCCI), American Association for Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE), and the Institute for Student Services Professionals (ISSP).
Mike Lawrence, UNLV, Associate VP, Administrative Services

Ken Kline, College of Western Idaho, Vice President, Finance & Administration: Ken Kline is Vice President, Chief Financial Officer, at the College of Western Idaho where he provides leadership in the areas of Finance, Information Technology, and Institutional Effectiveness. Ken previously served as VP and CFO at Clarkson University, AVP for Budget and Planning at Boise State University, Budget Director at Northern Kentucky University, and Business Systems and Financial Planning Manager at Cornell University.Prior to serving in higher education, Ken worked for an HCM software company and in city government. Currently residing in Boise with his wife and high schooler, Ken is proud to see his two other children pursuing higher education at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and the University of Utah. Ken holds an M.B.A. from Cornell University, an M.A. in Economics from The Ohio State University, and a B.A. in Economics from Xavier University. Ken is currently focused on helping CWI deliver a B.A.S. in Business Administration for $20,000.
Linda Campos, University of Idaho, VP Finance

Matt Skinner, Washington State University, Senior Associate VP and Deputy CFO

Lars Kontz, HelioCampus, Senior Vice President of University & College Partnerships.

Matt Crawford, Helio Campus, Director of Product Management

Dr. Kyle Sauvageau, HelioCampus, Product Manager: Kyle currently works as a product manager for HelioCampus, serving in this role for four years. Prior to HelioCampus, Kyle spent 12 years working in various administrative functions in Higher Education, most recently as a Business Process Manager for UNC Greensboro. Kyle has also been active in the NACUBO community since 2019 and most recently presented at the national event in 2022 alongside two client institutions. In addition to his primary role, Kyle also serves as a flight instructor, teaching advanced flight training in Cirrus aircraft. Kyle also holds a Doctorate in Business Administration with a dissertation on the relationship between aircraft age, cost variables, and profitability.